removal of extraneous trim and smaller windows, creating a more plain-box approach to homes. In the 1990s homes ballooned in size, becoming almost unmanageable, and wall-to-wall carpet was a reality. Now homeowners are returning to traditional elements with crown mouldings, coffered ceilings and large windows; character is the word in new homes and renovations alike. By using modern technology and traditional building techniques homeowners are creating their dream houses. “Huge open spaces is a trend that is not going to last. Many of my clients are moving towards having walls again. An open floor plan doesn’t necessarily mean having no walls at all,” remarks Bentley. An open floor plan can be achieved by simply making larger doorways or creating half walls, pocket doors and barn doors can create the open feeling you desire or the privacy you need. Open plan spaces are more about creating an open feeling than creating a cavernous space. Home styles now take from a wide variety of historic designs and homeowners can choose from Colonial, Victorian, Cape Cod or craftsman homes with unique modern twists and comforts. Gaining popularity with home builders is a neo-craftsman style. Originating in the early 1900s, the style focuses on local materials, basic elements and simple details. The style was popularized by Frank Lloyd Wright’s Prairie School. This idea of using local materials goes hand -in-hand with modern movements towards energy efficiency and ecology. LEED home certification can only be achieved by buying products within a certain radius of the home. ENERGY STAR® ratings are not only for appliances: now they are for homes built with the latest energy efficient technologies, saving the world and money in the process. Another significant development in domestic architecture is the creation of the master suite. For more than a century the principal bedroom was anything but masterful, showing no distinct differences to any other bedroom in the house. Today the master bedroom is a retreat, complete with its own spa-like bathroom, walk-in closet for two and enough room for lounging. The very nature of the modern bedroom
has changed; it’s not simply a place to sleep anymore, it is a place to unwind, read and refresh after a long day… even a space to work. This multi-functionality is also true for children’s bedrooms: with almost anything they need — from toys, technology and a desk — there are few reasons to leave. “All this space in the modern home means that there is more space between people. Families have to make time for each other in this fast-paced world. We expect more out of our lives and we are doing more. A properly designed family home makes
space for the family to actually be a family,” says Chantelle Butterfield of Funktional Space. With the constantly evolving technology and style of our culture, who knows what the home of the future will look like. One thing is for certain: a home will still remain the place that families grow, whether it is a traditional home or an ultra-modern condo. What makes a house a home is who you fill it with and the memories you make, not what it looks like.